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Ivory Coast’s top singer DJ Arafat dies in road accident

DJ Arafat was an Ivorian DJ and singer, who made music in the Coupé-Décalé genre. (PHOTO/File)

ABIDJAN – Ivory Coast’s top musician Ange Didier Houon also known as DJ Arafat, a well-known singer in French-speaking Africa, has died following a traffic accident.

According to British Broadcasting Corporation, the singer was admitted to hospital in the main city, Abidjan, with a fractured skull after his motorcycle collided with a car on Sunday.

The 33-year-old died early on Monday.

He has been referred to as the “king” of coupé-décalé dance music and one of his biggest hit songs, Dosabado, has over five million views on YouTube.

The singer was also known for his love of motorcycles and featured them in his most recent hit, Moto Moto, that was released in May, which has more than four million YouTube views.

Ivory Coast Culture Minister Maurice Kouakou Bandaman expressed his condolences in a statement and said a tribute would be organised to honour the musician.

Fellow artists have also been sharing their condolences, including Nigerian star Davido and fellow Ivorian rapper Kaaris.

In 2016 and 2017 DJ Arafat was named artist of the year at the Coupé-Decalé Awards

DJ Arafat, whose real name was Ange Didier Huon, was named best artist of the year at the Coupé-Decalé Awards in 2016 and 2017.

Coupé-decalé (meaning “cut and run”) was born in the early 2000s during Ivory Coast’s civil war and emphasised that young people still wanted to have fun despite the conflict, reports the BBC’s Hatouma Diarra from Abidjan.

DJ Arafat came to symbolise the flashy well-dressed lifestyle associated with the music, which features fast percussion, deep bass and hip-hop-style vocals.

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